New podcast explores the life of Fr. Clarence Joseph Rivers

February 15, 2022 | NCR Online

by Emily StrandEric T. Styles | NCR Online

Photo by Emily Strand

The podcast “Meet Father Rivers,” which premiered last August and runs every month, examines the life of an inexplicably obscure figure of U.S. Catholic history: Fr. Clarence Joseph Rivers.

Rivers was the pioneer Black Catholic composer who set the American church ablaze with his 1963 album, “An American Mass Program,” a solemn, soulful blend of Roman chant with Black sacred song, and the beginning of his long career in liturgical inculturation.

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